TransWilts CIC and TransWilts Community Rail
Public and sustainable transport in Wiltshire

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Bus changes to Bath - good idea, but I despair at information available

I celebrate the changes made to the 271 / 272 bus route from Bath to Melksham and yet I despair at the quality of information available on the new service.

With one of the two bus companies on the Bath to Melksham route running a loop around Melksham Forest and Bowerhill, and the other running a more direct route that carries on to Devizes, the two in combination provide two buses an hour from Melksham to Bath and an hourly service from a wide range of 'burbs. Great. Falls apart a bit in the evenings and on Sundays, and as far as the NIMBY in me is concerned, I might have preferred two buses an hour to be continuing from Well House Manor to Bath not being cut back to one, with none on Sundays or in the evening.

So what's the problem? The inadequate provision of information, or the provision of incorrect information.

• I've yet to see a map showing how the new routes 271 and 272 work.

• Even the bus drivers don't know where to go. Catching an evening bus from the Market Place, I was surprised to see it appear from Spa Road; turns out the driver hadn't known his route and has missed out Melksham Forest [He looped around there for passengers once he checked at my prompting]

• Some of the bus stops are mislabelled. Outside Melksham Hospital, the early 2012 timetable has been removed - revealing an old timetable for 2008; very few (if any) buses run at the same time. Across the road, a new "First Buses from this Stop" is displayed, with a timetable; problem is that First buses no longer serve that stop at all.

I would expect / forgive a few teething problems. But lack of maps, bus drivers who don't know where they're going, bus stops which are no longer used by First showing new "buses from this stop" and historic timetables uncovered, all along a quarter of a mile stretch shows a complete incompetence, a lack of care, or no desire for the new service to work. Or all three.
(written 2013-08-08, updated 2013-08-17)

 
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Some other Articles
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Tell me a bit about Melksham
Bus changes to Bath - good idea, but I despair at information available
Special General Meeting, Adoption of Constitution for TransWilts Community Rail Partnership
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